This homestead life isn’t easy. In fact, its the complete opposite. Its exhausting work and filled with many daily challenges.
But it is worth every single struggle, challenge, ache & pain.
This life is pretty amazing and incredibly rewarding. I thank God every single day for the opportunity of raising our children in the quiet of country living.
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Reasons Why this Homestead Life isn’t Easy…
Homesteading is filled with many wonderful blessings and learning opportunities. It’s exactly what I never knew I wanted from life. And the most perfect place for our family to grow in God’s grace.
Because where else can we be united with Him among nature and the peace and quiet?
Sometimes, it feels like a dream. But it is not free of hardships or challenges. Here are a few we have learned over the past several years.
Plans don’t always go as anticipated
If you haven’t caught on from reading some of my previous posts, yet. I am a planner. I’m a Type A personality and crave organization.
But you know what, life can’t always fit into some great plan of ours. Life is messy.
One good thing that I’ve learned during this homestead journey (and I say journey because we are always growing), is to become flexible. Not necessarily a strength of mine, but I’m learning to embrace it more everyday and I have really learned how to relax and let go of what I can’t control.
I’ve always been the type of person who believes that if you’re not five minutes early for something, you’re already late.
Well, tell that to cows or goats. Ha! They’re always getting out of some place or escaping. There have been times where we have experienced difficult animal births and we’ve had to intervene.
Or there may be days that the dishes pile up in the sink until noon because sometimes mom life. Or sometimes a homestead project or emergency took precedence. The struggle is so real.
Always anticipate your plans may change and have back up plans.
It is the hardest work I’ve ever known
I was not born into country living. Until just about seven years ago, I was very much a city girl. The career I had then was hard work, too.
But golly, homesteading sure is incredibly hard. Moments of rest and relaxation are hard to come by, but I still try to make them happen because they are also important!
We are up before the sun is, sometimes even before the rooster crows. And there’s usually just enough time to pray some devotions and enjoy a cup of coffee before the work of the day sets in.
All three meals on our homestead are made from scratch. And immediately after breakfast, all of the homestead chores are started. My husband also works on the family ranch and is out from sun up until sun down on most days.
And if it wasn’t for my amazing husband, I wouldn’t have known what value there is in this homestead labor.
Eggs need to be gathered daily, coops and pens cleaned, garden watered and weeded, routine maintenance and upkeep. And fence building and animal breeding.
Let’s not forget care and the home & raising our young children. Running multiple businesses from home, and homeschooling. It’s exhausting.
Homesteading can be challenging on the finances
Making a life from scratch can be draining on the finances if there isn’t a good plan in place to make this farm life profitable.
We have built our homestead from scratch a little over the past several years so that we can live within our means and still make a profit. Here’s how we make money by homesteading. This list may change over time as markets change and as we continue to grow and build our homestead slowly.
The costs of repairs to fences and out buildings, animal feed, emergency Vet visits, land expenses and taxes. They can add up quickly and sometimes they can equate to more than income. That’s why having a profitable plan is incredibly important.
It is also important for us to live with as little debt as possible. We never know what the future may hold and I never want to be left in a position where we are unable to pay off debts.
Dealing with death on the homestead
The other day we had an unexpected storm pop up. Nebraska weather can become severe, quickly. And this storm wasn’t forecasted.
Believe me, I have learned the importance of checking the weather multiple times a day.
Still, this storm approached and things got a little dicey. Full sized hay bales were rolled. Can you imagine? I mean, these things weigh about 1,600 pounds. Yet, the wind rolled them across the pasture like they were tumbleweeds.
This storm hit fast and with incredible force. Our goats were out grazing in a pasture that afternoon and one of them (sweet Jack) was struck by lightning.
Now, we know that death is inevitable and we’ve had our fair share of losses. But it still doesn’t get any easier.
All of our homestead animals serve a purpose. But they are also like little members of the family and we get pretty attached just like one might get attached to a family dog.
Predators are always a challenge
I mean, for real. I hate predators. They have been a constant battle for these past several years. When we started life on our homestead, chickens were our first animal purchase.
I had big plans to allow them to free range across our yard. But things quickly changed once our first predator got to our flock.
We have taken many precautions and learned some valuable lessons.
Once we set up this electric fence, we haven’t lost any of our chickens or ducks to predators. But it doesn’t stop them from trying to feast on our ladies.
This life is also incredibly rewarding
Despite all of the hard work and extra efforts involved. It is the most rewarding lifestyle I have lived.
Our children get to experience this amazing country life. We have peace, quiet, and very little stress.
Being surrounded by farm animals and nature is worth all of the things which make homestead life anything but easy.